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Personal finance

Manage your money confidently. Let us help with the legal.

Phyllis T.
Rocket Lawyer member since 2013

Personal finance FAQs

  • How should I track my personal finances?

    There are many ways you can track your personal finances. You can use apps or spreadsheets, which are often free. You can even find budget templates online built by popular spreadsheet software. Or, your bank may offer a service for tracking your budget and investments. If you don't mind paying a bit, you can use personal finance software or an online service.

    How do I track my net worth?

    To track your net worth you simply make a list of your assets and debts. You then simply compare the values. Many Americans have a negative net worth due to how much they own on their home. If you are young and just bought a home, you likely have a negative net worth. Tracking your net worth can help you achieve a realistic view of your finances. Your goal is to eventually create a positive net worth as you get closer to retirement.

  • Should I get a debt consolidation loan?

    It depends. Debt consolidation loans are attractive since they may offer a lower interest rate and a lower monthly payment. You can estimate how much it will cost you to pay off the consolidation loan versus paying off the original debt. You may discover that the debt consolidation loan may cost you more in the long run compared to paying off the original debt.

    Before accepting a consolidation loan, ask yourself,

    • How much will paying off the loan cost me?
    • Can I easily make the monthly payments?
    • Am I disciplined enough to not incur more debt?
    • If I transfer to a zero-interest card, can I pay it off before interest is charged?
    • Can I possibly negotiate lower payments for my student loans or medical debt?

    Do you need a debt collection attorney?

  • What is an FHA loan?

    Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loan is a mortgage issued by an FHA-approved lender. The mortgage is insured by the Federal Housing Administration. The loans are intended for those with low or moderate-income and marginal credit. The down credit required is only 3.5 percent. Interest rates offered may vary based on income history, credit, and down payment. While these loans may be easier to obtain than a traditional loan, you may be required to pay mortgage insurance premiums longer than you would with a traditional loan.

    Should I get an FHA loan?

    While the loans are easier to obtain, there are a few disadvantages to consider, such as:

    • Limited equity if you only pay 3.5 percent down
    • Long-term mortgage insurance payments (11+ years)
    • Local home-buying programs may offer more affordable terms

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